Blink. Church of St. Mary Magdalene
Josephus calls the settlement Tarihei. It is Magdala or Migdal, most likely due to the presence in the settlement of a fortress-tower (“Migdal” in Hebrew – “tower”), in which there was a garrison with an officer representing Rome in this area. Joseph gives such a colorful description of this corner of Galilee that I will give it in full:
“Along the Genisaret Lake stretches the terrain of the same name, surprising both in nature and in beauty. Due to the fertility of the soil there is no plant that does not grow here, and the locals grow everything, and the local climate is so temperate that it corresponds to The most varied species here grow in abundance both walnut trees, which love winter more than all other plants, as well as date-hungry palm trees, and next to them are fig trees and oil trees, which are favored by a milder climate. about, an ambitious plan of nature triumphs, having established a good rivalry between the seasons, as if each of them disputes the domination of the area by another, but nature not only produces the most unusual and heterogeneous fruits here – it also takes care of them carefully. The most regal of all, grapes and figs, she delivers for 10 consecutive months, while all others ripen on trees all year round. For, in addition to the mild climate, this land is also irrigated by the most fertile of springs, called by the locals Kfar Nahum (Capernaum). “(I. Flavius” The Jewish War “book 3, ch. 8 – 10).
Magdala is the birthplace of Mary Magdalene. This female image is central to the Bible. From Mary of Nazareth, who gave Jesus the world, to Mary Magdalene, who first announced to the world His victory over death, an arch was thrown that forever identified these women as Christ’s lovers. Her acquisition of a high level of spirituality made the name of Mary Magdalene so popular that the concept of fidelity and boundless faith became allegorical to him. At the same time, several careless conjectures and interpretations of the Gospels turned Mary into a sinner. “Mary Magdalene stood for 1900 years at the pillory, doused with mud; but for this we should have put ourselves to the pillory. This Mary was never a harlot; there is no indication anywhere that she was a depraved woman. The only thing we are talking about we know, it’s that she was sick with a nervous disease. And Jesus healed her. ” (Frank S. Mead “Who is Who in the Bible”). And as the psychiatrist said: “There are no people mentally healthy, there are only unexplored …”.
Excavations of the ancient settlement, carried out by archaeologists under the direction of V.L. Korbo, discovered a settlement with a typical layout for that time, a typical synagogue, typical residential and public buildings. I am very pleased to repeat the word “typical”, because it very naturally says that normal, everyday life flowed here, ordinary people lived here and, therefore, the events that happened here really took place.
Since the proclamation of Christianity as the state religion of the Byzantine Empire, the birthplace of Mary Magdalene became an object of pilgrimage, a church was built here, which befell the fate of all other churches in Palestine. During the leadership of the Russian Ecclesiastical Mission by Archimandrite Antonin (see “walk” No. 21 “The Russian Orthodox Church in Jerusalem”), a plot of land was acquired in Tiberias, on the very bank of the Kinneret, with the aim of building strange houses for them to receive pilgrims during their stay in the area. It was built after the death of Father Antonin. A convent was formed here, and in 1962 a church was built in the name of Saint Equal-to-the-Apostles Mary Magdalene.
Tourists traveling along Highway 90, which goes around the north-west coast of Kinneret, do not even assume that behind a deaf concrete fence, next to the youth hotel YMCO, there is a Russian Orthodox convent with my name. They belong to the Moscow Patriarchate. Of course, pilgrims are always welcome guests. And from my own practice I know that, in accordance with a preliminary arrangement, the nuns open the doors for visitors and tourists, but still I do not understand why these doors are not always open? After all, tourists are money, donations, in the end, the veneration of a shrine that belongs to everyone: both Christians and just civilized people! No, you cannot understand Russia with your mind! Lack of funds? – so they are not, and because of this, too!
A 43 ha land plot is very beautiful! Just God’s corner that goes right to the lake. One of the pilgrims compared it to Ilmen. Very sure! On the territory there is a radon source. The one near which Jesus healed Holy Mary.
The church, both externally and internally, is typical of such small buildings in Mother Russia. The iconostasis, the few icons on the walls are dedicated to the heroine of this place, Mary Magdalene.